2021 State of Reviews
Reviews can be make-or-break for any business, and that’s never been more true than it is in 2021. But what do customers care about most? Is it simply just a good star rating? Is it worth your time to respond to reviews? And what makes customers more likely to leave reviews?
We surveyed 2,376 people (1,543 consumers, 455 SMB owners/managers, 378 enterprise business leaders) to better understand the role reviews play in 2021.
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The bar to even be considered is higher than you might think.
The key word here is consider. This in no way means that a business with a 3.4 star rating would actually win a consumer’s business, it just means they won’t be dismissed immediately. That number is likely to go up as businesses become more and more proactive about their online reputations.
People will pay more and travel farther for a better experience.
Consumers make their voices heard by how and where they spend their money. The fact that roughly half of all consumers in 2021 would travel farther to and spend more at a business with good reviews speaks volumes. This also represents an opportunity for businesses with great reputations to expand their geographical reach and expand market share.
Responding to reviews really does work.
There’s not much you can do about negative reviews, right? Does anyone actually read responses? In reality, people realize that bad reviews happen to good businesses. Business responses can add much needed context to what could otherwise be a damning review.
COVID-19 has changed the way people read reviews.
This is the perfect example of why it’s important to have recent, relevant reviews. If the majority of reviews are from 2019 or earlier, it’s hard to know whether a business practices necessary safety precautions. Consumers are regularly turning to reviews to get that peace of mind before making purchasing decisions.
Online reputation software pays for itself.
How a business shows up online largely determines what shows up on their bottom line. Providing good customer service and hoping for the best isn’t a viable strategy in 2021. More and more businesses are turning to software to take control of their online reputations, and the overwhelming majority are seeing a direct return on that investment.
This is just scratching the surface.
These are just some highlights from the 2021 State of Reviews report. Download the full report to get more insight and data into how consumers are using reviews, the impact reviews have on local businesses of all sizes, and how you can best position your business to own your local market.